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MABioN Lunchtime Webinar – Testing genetic resistance for soil borne pathogens in tobacco in a greenhouse environment

12 February, 2015 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm CDT


Title: Testing genetic resistance for soil borne pathogens in tobacco in a greenhouse environment



Traditional breeding for resistance to pathogens in any crop is one of the most valuable strategies to manage plant diseases in agriculture. In the past, validation for resistance in new hybrid lines has relied mostly in screenings done at fields where the pathogens were naturally present or introduced; this is not only costly in labor and management, but it also slows down the breeding process considerably. Although screenings in infested fields are still very useful, preliminary testing in controlled environments such as growth chambers and greenhouses are more desirable in the early stages. We currently use a contained method where small seedlings are challenged with different soil borne pathogens at a time for a total of 6-7 weeks; and for several years, results have proven to be highly correlated with the actual presence of the resistance genes (as tested concurrently with molecular markers) and their performance in the field nurseries. From the perspective of set up and management, our technique enables us to safely handle and dispose of the plant pathogens and diseased seedlings without contaminating adjacent greenhouse rooms or the environment.



Dr. Natalia Martinez studied microbiology at the Universidad de los Andes in Bogota, Colombia and then obtained a Master’s and Ph.D. degrees in Plant Pathology at Virginia Tech and Auburn University, respectively. She has worked with several plant diseases affecting diverse agricultural crops including carnations, grapes, tomatoes, cucumbers, and tobacco during her career. For the past five years she has been the plant pathologist for the tobacco breeding group with the Department of Plant & Soil Sciences at University of Kentucky, where she is in charge of evaluating newly developed hybrid lines for resistance to pathogens causing major diseases in tobacco worldwide. Her work mainly focuses on greenhouse screenings with soil borne fungi, but she also does testing with several viruses and bacterial pathogens.


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  • Registration for the webinar is required for all attendees.  There is a $10 fee for non-members to attend.
  • There is no charge for paid MABioN members to attend/participate in the webinar. There is a $10 discount code view-able to logged in MABioN Members on the event registration page.
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12 February, 2015
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm CDT
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Venue Online Meeting
Online Event United States


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